September is National Recovery Month

by | Last updated Sep 6, 2023 | Published on Sep 6, 2023 | Recovery awareness month | 0 comments

September is National Recovery Month.

National Recovery Month has a heartfelt history that’s all about support and healing. Back in 1989, it all began when people in the recovery community decided it was time to spread the word. They wanted to let the world know that recovery from addiction is possible and worth celebrating.

See, they understood that recovery isn’t just about quitting drugs or alcohol. It’s about rebuilding lives, reconnecting with family and friends, and finding purpose and happiness. They wanted to shine a light on these stories of strength and resilience.

So, they started organizing events and activities in September, creating a whole month dedicated to recovery. They reached out to communities, organizations, and people, inviting them to join in. It was a way to show people struggling with addiction that they were not alone and that there was help and hope.

Over the years, National Recovery Month has grown, and now it’s recognized all across the United States. It’s a time when people come together to support those in recovery and to raise awareness about addiction and its treatment.

Compassion is at the core of National Recovery Month, and the same value as The Freedom Center embodies. It’s about understanding, empathy, and celebrating the victories, no matter how small they may seem. It’s a reminder that recovery is possible, and everyone deserves a chance to heal and thrive. So, when you see those purple ribbons and events happening in September, remember that it’s all about compassion and hope.

Common Substances Used in Maryland

In Maryland, like in many places, substance abuse is a real concern, and it’s important to address it with compassion and understanding. According to the Bureau of Substance Addiction Services, some of the most common substances abused in Maryland are alcohol, opioids, marijuana, cocaine, and methamphetamine.

Opioids, like prescription painkillers such as oxycodone and illegal substances like heroin, raise concerns due to their high addictiveness and role in numerous overdose deaths. Alcohol, though legal for adults, can lead to various health and social issues when consumed excessively, with some people grappling with dependency, necessitating support and resources.

While marijuana has both recreational and medicinal uses in Maryland, misuse remains an issue, particularly among young adults. Furthermore, stimulants like cocaine and methamphetamine are also abused, though less prevalent compared to opioids and alcohol.  Here are some statistics that show the impact of substance abuse in Maryland:

  • There were 2,104 confirmed opioid-related overdose deaths among Maryland residents in 2020.
  • The rate of opioid-related overdose deaths was 30.5 per 100,000 residents in 2020, higher than the national average of 21.6 per 100,000 residents .
  • The percentage of opioid-related overdose deaths that involved fentanyl increased to 92% in 2020 .
  • There were 30,556 emergency medical services (EMS) incidents related to opioid use in 2020.
  • The number of newborns diagnosed with neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS), a condition caused by exposure to drugs in the womb, was 1,082 in 2020 .
  • The percentage of Maryland residents aged 12 or older who reported past-month alcohol use was 54.4% in 2020.
  • The percentage of Maryland residents aged 12 or older who reported past-month marijuana use was 21.5% in 2020.
  • The percentage of Maryland residents aged 12 or older who reported past-year cocaine use was 2.7% in 2020, higher than the national average of 2.0%.

Compassion plays a crucial role in addressing substance abuse. Addiction is a complex issue, often linked to underlying problems like mental health issues or trauma. People facing substance abuse problems should be met with empathy and have easy access to treatment and supportive services.

The Facts About Addiction

Addiction is a complex and deeply personal struggle that affects millions of individuals and their families. Here are some compelling facts about addiction that highlight the importance of understanding and compassion:

It’s a Brain Disease

Addiction is not simply a matter of weak willpower or lack of morals. It fundamentally alters the brain’s structure and function, making quitting a daunting challenge.

It Doesn’t Discriminate

Addiction can impact anyone, regardless of age, gender, race, or socioeconomic status. It doesn’t play favorites, and no one is immune.

Physical and Emotional Toll

It takes a heavy toll on both the body and mind. People with addiction often face deteriorating health, mental health issues, and strained relationships.

Rooted in Pain

Many individuals turn to substances as a way to cope with trauma, stress, or emotional pain. Understanding the underlying causes is crucial for effective treatment.

Relapse is Common

Relapse is not a sign of failure but a common part of the recovery process. It can take multiple attempts before achieving long-term sobriety.

Support Matters

Compassion, support, and access to quality treatment greatly improve the chances of recovery. Isolation and stigma can hinder progress.

It’s Costly

Addiction takes a significant toll on society, from healthcare expenses to lost productivity and strained social services.

Family Impact

Addiction affects not only the person struggling but also their loved ones. Families often face emotional and financial burdens while trying to help their loved ones recover.

Recovery is Possible

With the right support and resources, recovery is possible. Many people go on to lead fulfilling, sober lives.

Prevention Matters

Preventing addiction through education, awareness, and early intervention is as crucial as helping those already affected.

In dealing with addiction, compassion and understanding can make a world of difference in helping individuals on their journey to recovery and healing.

Why is National Recovery Month Important?

National Recovery Month is crucial because it shines a compassionate spotlight on the journey of recovery from addiction. It’s a time when we come together as a community to support those who are battling addiction and those who have successfully overcome it. It reminds us that recovery is possible and worth celebrating.

For people in recovery, it can be a challenging and often lonely path. National Recovery Month lets them know that they are not alone, that we care, and that there is hope. It helps reduce the stigma around addiction, making it easier for people to seek help without fear of judgment.

Moreover, National Recovery Month educates the public about addiction and the various treatment options available. It encourages families and friends to be understanding and supportive. By fostering compassion and empathy, this month plays a vital role in helping people on their recovery journey, ultimately saving lives and strengthening communities.

How to Observe National Recovery Month

Observing National Recovery Month is a heartfelt way to show support and compassion for those on the path to recovery from addiction. Here are some everyday ways to participate and make a positive impact:

Share Stories

Encourage people in recovery to share their stories. It can be empowering for them and inspirational for others who may be struggling.

Attend Events

Look for local recovery-related events in your community. AGo to workshops, seminars, or support group meetings to get a better understanding of addiction and how people recover from it.

Wear Purple

Purple is the official color of National Recovery Month. Wearing purple clothing or accessories can show your support and raise awareness.

Educate Yourself

Take the time to educate yourself about addiction, its causes, and treatment options. Knowledge can reduce stigma and help you offer better support.

Spread Awareness

Use your social media platforms to share information, resources, and stories related to addiction and recovery. A simple post can reach many people.


Many organizations working in addiction recovery welcome volunteers. Share your time and abilities to help their efforts.


If possible, give to organizations that help people with addiction treatment and support. Your contribution can have a big impact.

Offer a Helping Hand

If you know someone in recovery, let them know you’re there for them. A listening ear, a friendly chat, or assistance with daily tasks can mean a lot.

Host Supportive Gatherings

Organize gatherings that are substance-free and supportive of those in recovery. It can be a safe and welcoming space for people to connect.

Promote Self-Care

Encourage individuals in recovery to prioritize self-care. Offer suggestions for healthy activities like exercise, meditation, or art therapy.

Advocate for Policy Change

Advocate for policies that improve access to addiction treatment and support services in your community.

Celebrate Milestones

Recognize and celebrate the milestones of people in recovery, whether it’s a day, a week, a month, or years of sobriety.

Be Non-Judgmental

Approach conversations about addiction and recovery with empathy and without judgment. It’s important to create a safe, supportive environment.

Recovery at The Freedom Center

At The Freedom Center, recovery is not just a possibility; it’s a guiding principle. We understand that addiction can feel overwhelming, but we’re here to tell you that recovery is not only achievable but also a beautiful journey towards a healthier and happier life.

Our compassionate team at The Freedom Center is committed to supporting you every step of the way. We offer a range of evidence-based therapies, counseling, and a nurturing environment that fosters personal growth and healing. You’ll find a community of people who understand what you’re going through, providing a sense of belonging that’s so important in recovery.

Recovery is about discovering your strength and resilience. Our drug rehab in Maryland provides the tools and guidance to help you do just that. Whether you’re seeking help for yourself or a loved one, we encourage you to take that first step toward recovery. Reach out to us today, and let’s begin this journey together.

Written by: Nick B.

Nicholas B. is the Corporate Director of Admissions for our substance abuse and behavioral health company. Nick’s mission is to provide quality care to every person that reaches out regarding substance abuse or behavioral health questions. Knowledge of an ever-changing industry, compassion when dealing with people, and compliance in every decision are the forces that drive his personal and professional growth.

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